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Expected recidivism among young offenders: Comparing specific deterrence under juvenile and adult criminal law

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  • Entorf, Horst

Abstract

This paper contributes to the literature on specific deterrence by addressing the issue of selecting adolescents into adult and juvenile law systems. In Germany, different from the U.S. and most other countries, turning a critical cutoff age does not cause a sharp discontinuity from juvenile to adult penal law, but rather implies a shift to a discretionary system of both adult and juvenile law, dependent on the courts' impression of moral and mental personal development of the adolescent at the time of the act. The German legal system draws the line of adulthood at some fuzzy age interval between 18 and 21, which is well above the thresholds prevailing in the U.S. (16 to 18years, state specific) and other countries. Thus, the German evidence entails some external evidence to the previous literature mostly relying on U.S. data. Based on a unique inmate survey and Two-Equation Models controlling for selectivity problems, results show that application of adult criminal law instead of juvenile penal law decreases expected recidivism of adolescents.

Suggested Citation

  • Entorf, Horst, 2012. "Expected recidivism among young offenders: Comparing specific deterrence under juvenile and adult criminal law," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 414-429.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:28:y:2012:i:4:p:414-429
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ejpoleco.2012.03.002
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    Cited by:

    1. Jerry Sun & Steven F. Cahan & Jing Xu, 2016. "Individual Auditor Conservatism After CSRC Sanctions," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 136(1), pages 133-146, June.
    2. Entorf, Horst & Sattarova, Liliya, 2016. "The Analysis of Prison-Prisoner Data Using Cluster-Sample Econometrics: Prison Conditions and Prisoners' Assessments of the Future," IZA Discussion Papers 10209, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Entorf, Horst, 2013. "Criminal Victims, Victimized Criminals, or Both? A Deeper Look at the Victim-Offender Overlap," IZA Discussion Papers 7686, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Specific deterrence; Recidivism; Survey data; Bivariate Probit; Treatment effects;

    JEL classification:

    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
    • K14 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - Criminal Law
    • C25 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions; Probabilities

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